In this article, you will be able to learn how to open RAR files across different platforms- Windows, Mac, Android, iOS, and iPadOS. The methods are similar (with little to no changes) all over the platforms. To understand the methods easily, I have tried to keep the language non-technical, un-complicated, and without jargon throughout the article.
Before we start learning, let us see some points about RAR files. In computer science, RAR is an archival file format that allows you to compress data, span multiple files and recover from errors. RAR stands for Roshal ARchive. This name comes from its creator Eugene Roshal (born 1972), a Russian software engineer.
RAR files are actually folders containing any type of file(s). To open the RAR folder, you need an unrar software. In this guide, I will explain to you each and every step in an uncomplicated and easy way. Let us now explore how to open RAR files.
How to Open RAR Files on Different Devices?
RAR files are somewhat similar to zip files. RAR compresses the files stored inside its folders and makes it easy to copy, share and maintain as well. Many leading websites let you download data from them only in RAR files as it takes less data and space than a regular folder. To open the file, you will need to have proper software and knowledge of unraring (that means opening a RAR file).
How to Open RAR Files on Windows?
On Windows, the software needed to unrar the RAR files is called WinRAR. It is a powerful and free tool. Follow the given below step-wise guide on how to open RAR files on Windows:
- Download WinRAR as per your Windows bit version. The download size is somewhere between half an MB to 3.5 MB.
- Install the downloaded setup file by double-clicking it and follow the onscreen instructions.
- Click Yes > Install > Check the RAR box at top-left corner > OK > Done
- Go to the RAR file you want to unrar and double click on it (or left mouse click then Open). WinRAR will open automatically.
- If you have multiple folders inside the RAR, select the desired file(s)/folder(s).
- On the top ribbon of the window, you will see the Extract To icon, click on it.
- It will open a Destination Path, and select the desired destination where you want to store the uncompressed file. The destination folder is, by default, the same folder where your RAR file is stored.
- Click OK at the bottom right corner. That is it. Now go to the location where you have unextracted the file(s) or the folder(s) and open it.
How to Open RAR Files on Mac?
The famous and powerful unraring software on Mac is The Unarchiver. You need to have that software to open the RAR file. I will help you in downloading the software apart from the method of how to open RAR files on Mac. It is easy and takes very little time. Ready? Follow me.
- To download The Unarchiver app open the App Store on your Mac.
- Type ‘the unarchiver app‘ in the search bar.
- Open the result and click INSTALL right under the Unarchiver app.
- Open Spotlight in the top-right corner of the screen and type ‘the unarchiver’ in the search box.
- Open the Unarchiver app from the results, and you will see a pop-up window.
- Check the boxes you want to open with The Unarchiver app, don’t miss to check the RAR Archive box.
- Click Ask Every Time if you want The Unarchiver app to ask you about extract location.
- Go to your Mac’s Doc and open Finder.
- On the left-hand side of the Finder window, navigate to the folder where your desired RAR file is stored.
- Select the RAR folder and click File from the top left menu.
- Go to and click Open With and then select The Unarchiver from the pop-out menu. It will launch your RAR file in the Unarchiver app.
- Click a folder where you want the RAR file to be extracted.
- Click Extract, located at the bottom-right corner of the window, and it will extract your RAR file.
- Now, open the extracted folder. Done.
How to Open RAR Files on Android?
My favorite app to open RAR files on Android is WinZip. It is a free app hosted on Play Store. You need to have this app to proceed. Let me help you with all steps, from application downloading to the method of how to open RAR files on Android. Let us begin.
- Download the WinZip app on your Android smartphone from PlayStore and install it.
- Launch WinZip app on your smartphone.
- Tap the Start button located at the bottom.
- Tap three bars at the top and select the location where you have stored the RAR file.
- Tap and hold the RAR file for a while until a pop-up menu appears.
- Click on Unzip option from the pop-up menu.
- Select a location where you want to store the extracted folder. You can select your smartphone’s internal or external storage as well as Google Drive or Dropbox, whatever you prefer.
- Once you have decided on the destination folder, tap on UNZIP HERE, which is at the bottom-right corner of the screen.
- Now go to the folder which you have selected in step 7, you will find the unrar version of your RAR file out there. Open and enjoy.
How to Open RAR Files on iPhone or iPad?
Opening or unraring RAR files on iPad and iPhone is also simple, however, as it is a different platform, its steps are obviously going to be different. The best software to unrar RAR files in iPad and iPhone is iZip. Follow the steps of downloading it along with the method of how to open RAR files on an iPhone or an iPad.
- Download iZip from App Store. iZip is a free app with many other functions besides performing unrar.
- Launch iZip on your iPhone or iPad.
- Click on Document Browser from the main menu.
- Browse your RAR file and tap on it.
- It will import your RAR file and tap on YES on the pop-up.
- You will get an alert tap OK.
- That is it. Your RAR file is now like a normal folder. Open it and enjoy.
I hope this step-by-step guide on opening RAR files will help you. I have tried my best to keep the language, points, and methods simple. In case you’re stuck somewhere, kindly let me know. I will be more than happy to get things simplified for you.
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